- Date: 07-03-2015
- Current City: Colorado Springs, CO
- Current Location: Peregrine Pines FAMCAMP / Air Force Academy
- Site Number: 75
- Wi-fi Signal: Verizon – Good / AT&T – Acceptable / Campground Wi-fi – Hit and miss, free
- Cell Signal: AT&T – 2/5 bars LTE
- Mission: Work / Explore
- Compliment: 2 Officers, 2 Crew
- Captain: Eric Highland
- Navigator: Brittany Highland
- 1st Mate: Trogdor the Burninator
- Deckhand: Rhythm Jasmine
- Guests: None
- Weather: Partly Cloudy / 64°
- Precipitation: 0%
- Humidity: 70%
- Wind: 7 mph
- Fuel: 25 Gallons of Diesel – 1/4 tank
- Odometer: 113,517
- Generator Hours: 4628.0
- Estimated Date of Departure: Saturday, July 4th
- Next Destination: Golden, Colorado. Clear Creek RV Park
Special Orders: Crank Out Work Before Boys Arrive
09:34 – We had a really long drive ahead of us. So we left Kansas City, MO on Saturday morning and stopped in the middle of nowhere Kansas for a single night. Stayed at a truck stop in Colby, Kansas. I-70 westbound was flat and straight. There was a toll that we didn’t know about, but it was under $6 for Meriwether (our RV) and Smaug (our Jeep).
Sunday morning, waking up early, we headed out toward Colorado. At some point in the drive we started to see the mountains and wow!
We reflected on the journey of Lewis and Clark and the things they must have seen. Imagine them seeing the mountains for the very first time back in the day when skyscrapers didn’t exist! Remember, they had nothing to compare it to! Also, you can imagine millions of bison roaming the plains. Sadly we didn’t see a single one. Granted Lewis and Clark wisely bypassed Colorado (they went westward through Montana) but they still had to get passed the mountains. If you ever want to read a great book on their journey, I recommend Undaunted Courage by Stephen Ambrose.
On Sunday afternoon we pulled onto the Air Force Base. It is a great privilege to be able to stay on military bases and one that I never knew I’d be using when I was serving in the Coast Guard. But military retirement has it’s benefits for sure! $24 a night on a secure location in the middle of Colorado Springs with full hookups? Yes, please!
After arriving on Sunday night, we headed out to meet up with Brittany’s brother Tim and his fiancé Hannah. Actually that is why we came out this way. They are getting married on August 30th in Boulder, CO and we of course wanted to be here for the wedding. Anyway, so we went out to a town north of Colorado Springs called Castle Rock. We explored some antique shops and then headed out to Crave Burger. Of course we forgot to take pictures of us together, but we did take pictures of our food. Haha. Priorities right?
Monday morning came about and our front roof AC unit was rattling something fierce. So I took my tools and headed on up to the roof. I secured the power, removed the AC covers to compare the two. Turns out that one of our covers is missing some foam inserts that I believe prevent the covers from rattling. So we took pics of the parts we needed and swapped out the covers. It seems that for now the problem is fixed, but I know it is a temporary fix.
Monday was our 47th “monthiversary” (yes we still count the months) But hey we’ve almost been married 4 years now! So on Monday we went out to celebrate at The Wines of Colorado Restaurant in Manitou Springs. We sat out on the patio and it was sublime. Thanks to one of our Facebook followers who mentioned it!
Tuesday we headed back to Manitou Springs. We walked around the little town enjoying the views of the mountains and window shopping. Stopped for some boba tea and a smoothie. Then we went to the Arcade! It was awesome. Vintage arcade games galore. We raced horses, drove speeder bikes, played pinball and more. We even did one of those things where you hold the handle to see your “love” level. For the record I was “uncontrollable” (top) while Brittany was “blah” (bottom). Haha! Brittany said that it was rigged.
Wednesday was a work day. But something interesting happened. Our water pressure disappeared. I mean just stopped fully. So I flipped the valve and we started operating off of our fresh water tank until I could figure out the problem. I messed with it a little on Wednesday but didn’t fully figure it out. At least my view from the wet bay was lovely while I was trying to figure out our issue.
Thursday we took our little rescue kitten Rhythm Jasmine to get her third set of booster shots. She now weighs in at a whopping 3.4 lbs!
Then I spent a bit more time messing with our water system. Figured out that our water pressure regulator went bad. Talked with a Vietnam Vet named Stuart at our campground who is a really kind guy and guess what? He had a spare regulator that I could borrow. So I borrowed it, filled our water tank and again disconnected the hose.
The night ended off with Brittany playing the music of Mozart, Beethoven and other amazing composers on her Yamaha keyboard. I’m always so blessed to hear her play. I could do it for hours.
Friday (today) we are wrapping up work and getting ready for the weekend. We need to run a bunch of errands. You know, the usual: Worms for Trogdor, a new litter box for Rhythm, a water pressure regulator and some superglue. Usual stuff.
Tomorrow morning we head out to Golden, Colorado and pick up the little boys who are flying into Denver and will be with us for a month. Can’t wait to be with Javen and Silas.
So that’s it folks. You are all caught up. Leave us a comment we’d love to hear from you!
Remarks: Never be shy to reach out for help from a fellow RVer. Always be safe, but never be shy. Most of the RVers we’ve met have been extremely kind (like Stuart) and will go out of their way to help you. It is a great community of people.
11:30 – I’m a lot more familiar with the eastern United States. My only grandparent lives in the Toronto area, so my family drove there from Corpus Christi, TX almost annually, taking different routes and stopping along the way (usually at historic sites). There’s something about the sophistication and architecture of the older cities that resonates with me. What’s not to adore about Savannah, Williamsburg, Charleston, and the bustling cities of the northeast?
So, funny as it may sound to our many RV friends who love the west, I’ve been a bit apprehensive about setting our sights toward this part of the country. Will we have an Internet signal for our work days? Will we have a more difficult time finding parks with full hookups? No one really expects us to dry camp, do they?
I still don’t really know the answers to all of those questions, but I’m enjoying the journey. Kansas (what I consider our nation’s heartland) was just beautiful in its own way. And when Eric texted me about the Rockies coming into view, a thrill went through me. I’ve seen them before, but I had forgotten how massive they are.
I too had no idea of all the FAMCAMP at the military bases ($18-$22 a night), until we started full-timing. It saves on our camping fee and we can spend our money on places we want to go. I use https://www.militarycampgrounds.us to find FAMCAMP in the towns we are going or will be close to. With the Exchange, Commissary and base gym everything we need is in one location. We did the West coast last year and the internet services are better then what we have found on the East coast this year. That’s why my blog is almost a month behind. It also seems to take longer to get where we want driving our rig in the West coast mountain ranges.
Russell what West Coast Fam Camps would you recommend? We’re heading that way in 2016.
Sorry, I don’t check my gmail account that often. I hope I’m not too late. Ft Bliss in El Paso, TX there is a mini city around the exchange. We could not believe how much is going on, on this base and the Mexico boarder is right there. Being from TX you probably already know about Ft Bliss. Kirkland AFB in New Mexico. Lots to do National Parks, Capitol Building and of course the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. Nellis AFB in Las Vegas only a short drive from the strip and a few blocks from the motor speedway lot cheaper than the strip. Fairchild AFB in WA make sure to go to Clear Lake Recreation Area and NOT on base. It’s right on the lake with boat and kayak rentals with swimming and fishing. Close drive to Spokane, WA. Last one NOT a FAMCAMP, but if near Sutherlin, OR stop at Hi-Way RV Park. we used passport America (weekday) God Sam (weekend) Oregon Dunes NRA, waterfalls and cover bridges surround this country area. On the weekend they show movies on their drive-in theater screen. If close you can watch from your coach or drive your car up to the screen and watch it like your intended to.
Enjoy your 2016 Grand Loop.
Thanks Russell! All great tips. Appreciate you coming back and sharing the RV knowledge!
We stay at many military CGs, a real bennie for us old retired vets! :c)
So true Paul. Always thankful for this bennie!
As always enjoy your updates and travels and Happy 47th! We’ve been using military campgrounds recently too. Pensacola NAS was our last stop. Safe journeys on the road.
Joe, we’re currently at the AFB Rec Camp in San Angelo, TX. Really nice lake here to fish from!
Brian M. Wamsley
Really enjoying your blog and information. My wife and I plan to hit the road in about 12 months. Lots to do between now and then. We are full-time Rving already in a lovely park in Vacaville, CA and decided we really love the lifestyle. Keep us posted! And Thank you for your service. My grandfather was a coastie.
Appreciate that Brian! So you are 9 months or so away from hitting the road. Have you decided where you are heading? And always glad to meet another Coast Guard family. Semper Paratus
Just getting into your fantastic journey’s now……….Have enjoyed reading your adventures. My intentions are to be a full timer some day. I am a 24/7 care giver to both of my 91yo parents. I consider it a privilege to take care of them. Will be sad when it is done, but have dreams to fulfill when that day does come………bittersweet………..Please continue to enjoy yourselves for the sake of those of us living vicariously through you…………….Thanks and …………………..camp on……………
Wayne, our hearts go out to you and your parents! We treasure the fact that you are doing this for them and we understand that the moment will be bittersweet. We’d love to meet you someday on the road!
way cool. you guys are what keep us old gizzers young, I have a daughter in the springs Thanks for responding, I am sure you are busy